Taste of Sunnyside
Restaurants in Sunnyside @ 2nd Annual Food Event
October 18, 2011 / Sunnyside Neighborhood / Food & Wine / Queens Buzz. It was a fine night for a food fest in Sunnyside, New York. So I sauntered on down to the Sunnyside Community Service Center to see what delectables awaited me at the 2nd annual Taste of Sunnyside. Click here to view our report on Taste of Sunnyside 2012 or use the search function to find related reports.
There were 20 Sunnyside restaurants and four beverage vendors this year. All of which are located in the Sunnyside vicinity. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to sample all of them before the end of the first seating.
There were two seatings this year, and both were pretty well sold out … click here to read the rest of our report on the Taste of Sunnyside, including a slide show with photos of the food, many of the restaurateurs, and the folks who’d come to sample the fare of the restaurants in Sunnyside.
Taste of Sunnyside
Restaurants in Sunnyside @ 2nd Annual Food Event
Continued. October 18, 2011 / Sunnyside Neighborhood / Food & Wine / Queens Buzz. When I arrived there was a line waiting to pick up their food tickets. Once inside there was a bustling crowd milling about the food counters. After I found a few foods with which to begin, I went looking for a table and chair all of which were occupied. But with a little effort I eventually found a place to rest and munch. The Taste of Sunnyside accomodated more than 250 people per seating, the first of which began at 5.30 pm and the other which began at 7.30 pm.
Organizers of the Taste of Sunnyside [Sunnyside Shines & Sunnyside Chamber of Commerce] lined up the food serving tables along three of the four walls. Above each counter there was a sign denoting which restaurant was serving. The service was excellent, with many of the tables being attended by the restaurant owners themselves. The restaurateurs donate the food and beverages they prepare, and the proceeds go to Sunnyside Shines and the Sunnyside Chamber of Commerce.
Sunnyside Restaurants – At Taste of Sunnyside
The mix of food was impressive, which you will see in a minute, as I provide a brief description of everything I ate. There were Japanese and Thai foods from Ariyoshi and Dee Thai, Italian from Dazies and Donatos, burgers and fries from White Castle, Irish fare from Bar 43, Middle Eastern from both Souk El Shater and the Turkish Cultural Center, cakes from Pink Icing and a number of others [I sampled most of these and more].
I was so busy sampling the foods of the local restaurateurs, that I didn’t stop to check out the beverages which included wine, beer, juices and soft drinks. Rebecca Barker, President of the Sunnyside Chamber of Commerce, is shown standing in the midst of the 2nd Annual Taste of Sunnyside at the Community Services Center on 39th Street.
Sunnyside Restaurants – From around the World
The following is a brief description of some of the things I sampled tonight.
Souk Al Shater - Queens Blvd near 43rd Street
Souk Al Shater Restaurant I had rice rolled in a grape leave. The rice was well cooked and the grape leave had a light oily feel and flavor. They gave me a spinach dumpling which was covered in a nice fresh cooked dough. I had a meat filled pie which was also covered in the same fresh cooked dough. And a falafel made of chick peas, that was light and crispy.
The Middle Eastern food I sampled from Souk Al Shater at the Taste of Sunnyside is shown in the photo to your left as well as in the slide show below.
Salt & Fat Restaurant - Queens Blvd near 42nd St
Salt & Fat restaurant served a soft, well-cooked, buttery shrimp that kind of melted in my mouth. There was carrot puree served on the side and it was garnished with corn and capers.
In the photo to your left is the food served by Salt & Fat restaurant in Sunnyside. This photo is enlarged and shown in the slide show below.
Pink Icing - Queens Blvd near 44th St
I met Juan of Pink Icing who is the owner of the soon to open – Pink Icing cake shop on Queens Blvd. He expects to open within the next [couple] week(s). He served these light, airy white cakes laden with a super soft, lightly sweetened multi-colored frosting [sorry no photo, but see his large wedding cake in the slide show].
He also served me a piece of his apple pie. This was a cinnamon flavored, medium well cooked apple [not mush but not al dente] in a crust that was soft and doughy on the inside and a flavorful crunchy crust on the outside.
Saffron Garden Restaurant - Skillman near 45th St
They served a rice pudding that contained sweetened coconut shreds. The mix was frozen overnight to attain the proper texture and assimilation of ingredients which also included saffron peanuts and an Indian spice.
The rice pudding from Saffron Restaurant that I sampled at the Taste of Sunnyside is shown in the photo to your left. This photo is also shown in the slide show below enlarged.
Anise Fusion - 41st Street near Queens Blvd
Anise Fusion does a mix of Thai, Indian and Chinese food. They served Manchurian chicken which is deep fried battered chicken, spiced with ginger and garlic. The spicy, flavored chicken also included cumin, coriander and paprika. To complement the meat dish, they served a vegetarian rice which had bits of zucchini, broccoli, peppers and onions mixed in with the rice.
The dishes mentioned above are shown in the photo to your left as well as in the slide show below.
Ariyoshi Japanese Restaurant - Queens Blvd near 41st St
Ariyoshi Japanese restaurant was serving Karaage and Yaekisoba, which translated are Japanese fried chicken and a chow mein. They also offered edamae, spicy tuna and a California roll. Edamae are soy beans. I had had Ariyoshi tuna and the California rolls at Ariyoshi before and they’re quite good.
The owners of Ariyoshi Japanese restaurant in Sunnyside are shown in the photo to your right as well as in the slide show below.
Dee Thai on Queens Blvd & 46th Street
Dee Thai restaurant was serving vegetable dumplings and Penang beef curry. The vegetable dumplings had a nice soft doughy exterior. The vegetables included broccoli, carrots, celery and mushroom mixed with ginger, soy, salt and sugar – all of which had been mixed into a thick batter that had been tucked inside the dumpling.
The Penang chicken had a bit of kick to it, as it had been seasoned with hot pepper and curry and laid atop a bed of rice with sweetened coconut milk and beans.
Donatos Restaurant - 51st St & 43rd Ave, Woodside
Donatos Italian restaurant in Woodside served Penne Vodka and Chicken Alla Fresca. The chicken was cooked to a moist tender consistency and covered with lemon, butter and white wine sauce. The penne came in a creamy tomato based sauce. The pizza, one of Donatos’ specialties, was gone by the time I arrived. But I have eaten it many times before and was not surprised to hear they'd run out.
Unfortunately I’d run out of time, so I shot a few extra photos and briefly sampled the following tables. Pablo Donatos is shown in the photo to your left as well as in the slide show below.
Dazies Restaurant - Queens Blvd & 39th St
Dazies was serving a couple of varieties of pasta. Although we ran out of time, it's worth noting that we’ve reported on Dazies at other events, so you can use the search function on this site to view other reports and photos of Dazies Restaurant in Sunnyside.
The photo to your left shows the two men working the Dazies restaurant table at the 2nd annual Taste of Sunnyside. There's also a photo in the slide show below of Lillian Gavin at the Dazies restaurant serving table.
Bar 43 at 43rd Avenue & 43rd Street in Sunnyside
Bar 43 was serving an Irish pie. This was a hearty meat stew along with a cut of mashed potatoes.
In the photo to your left are the two men working the Bar 43 table at the second annual Taste of Sunnyside. There's also a photo in the slide show of the Bar 43 owner with the Irish pie.
Quaint Restaurant on Skillman Ave & 47th Street
Quaint restaurant was serving grilled bratwurst with quinoa, walnuts and cranberries and a pear chutney on a lentil cracker with candied pine nuts. We did a restaurant review of Quaint restaurant a while back which you can find using the search function.
Tim Chen and the Quaint Restaurant chef are shown in the photo to your left as well as in the slide show below.
Taste of Sunnyside – Sunnyside Restaurants
A Taste of Sunnyside in one night gave the audience a quick sampling of a variety of restaurants serving the Sunnyside neighborhood. There was restaurant variety ethnically as well as for various budget levels.
At the end of the evening I made my way out. Lined up along 39th Street the people who had reserved for the second seating were anxiously awaiting the feast that awaited them. I began to walk home, in hopes that I might begin working some of it off as I did.
Slide Show Photos
The following are descriptions of some of the people shown in the photos in the slide show below. You may also click here to view the album of photos of Taste of Sunnyside.
DSC04422 – Judith Zangwill, Executive Director of Sunnyside Community Service Center, John Vogt Chairman of Sunnyside Shines, Catherine Nolan NY State Assembly
DSC04434-7 – Ahmad Osman of Souk El Shater
DSC04438-9 – Salt & Fat
DSC04448 – Juan of Pink Icing [coming soon]
DSC04449 – Rebecca Barker President of Sunnyside Chamber of Commerce
DSC04451 – Unknown - please send names
DSC04454 – Ms. Murray of Sunnyside Post
DSC04459 – Isabelle Marisco LaGuardia Performing Arts Center [LPAC], Handan Ozbilgin Bromley Assistant Artistic Director of LPAC, Fernando Torres actor [center]
DSC04461-2 – Turkish Cultural Center
DSC04463 – Saffron Garden
DSC04476 – Anise Fusion
DSC04479 - Ariyoshi
DSC04489 – Dee Thai
DSC04491 – Bar 43
DSC04497 – Tim Chen (L) of Quaint Restaurant
DSC04502 – Lilian Gavin of Dazies Restaurant
DSC04509 – Susan Baldock & Patrice Lee of April Glass Gift Shop
DSC04512 – Pablo Donatos, Jimmy Van Bramer & Chef Angelo of Donatos Restaurant Woodside
DSC04512 – James Bray Executive Director & John Vogt Chairman of Sunnyside Shines
DSC04515-6 – Ms. & Monge Deodoro Bliss 46 Bistro [opening soon]
DSC045164 – White Castle
DSC045164 – Sunnyside Restaurant & Grill
Click here to go directly to the album containing photos of many of the foods served by the Sunnyside Restaurants at the 2nd annual Taste of Sunnyside.
Special Mentions & Thanks
The event was sponsored by Sunnyside Shines and the Sunnyside Chamber of Commerce. John Vogt and Rebecca Barker are the respective heads of these organizations. Also special thanks to all of the restaurants, which worked so hard to prepare and serve these foods. And the Sunnyside Community Services Center where the event was hosted.
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